Dear Alliance Française Member,
October is all about enjoying the beauty of the last waning days of Summer before the air turns from cool to cold and the dilemma of "Covid-safe" holiday planning sets in. It's the month for your inner child to lead the way with garbage bag ghosts hanging from tree limbs, endless supplies of glow-in-the-dark food colorings, the elusive pumpkin spice omega keto vegan ice-cream and the K9 grain-free pumpkin treat that is sure to enhance your dog's digestive health beyond your wildest dreams. As part of our Tour de la Francophonie, October will also be the month of Lebanon at the Alliance. Did you know that Lebanon is the oldest country name in the world, remaining unchanged for over 4,000 years? And that the first known alphabet was developed in Byblos, 20 miles north of Beirut? Incidentally, Byblos means "papyrus" in Greek and gave us the word "Bible." There are so many fascinating facts about Lebanon that we wonder how we've survived without. We will attempt to scratch the surface of Lebanese culture with 2 main Zoom events this month: one in English about the Lebanese Diaspora with Pr. Akram Khater from NCSU, and one in French entitled Mon Pays: le Liban, with Dr. Mariam Abboud, a member and former teacher at our Alliance. Here is what else to expect in the coming weeks:
Classes 2 new Specialty Classes for Fall - both taught in French:
Littérature de Résistance Thursdays 12-1pm - October 8, 15, 22, 29. This class will focus on French-language literature of resistance and survival. You will study Vercors' Le Silence de la Mer, Assia Djebar's L'Amour la Fantasia, and selections from Albert Camus, Marguerite Duras, Jean-Paul Sartre, and the poets of the French Resistance.
Fall in Love with Opera Wednesdays 5-6pm - November 4, 11, 18 and December 2 Dive into the world of opera! You will listen to spectacular, beautiful, and moving voices and learn what lies behind them: the great composers of opera, the origin of the famous tunes, and the stories of the divas who brought them to life !
The Conversation Class is moving to Monday, 12-1pm, starting October 5th. Sign up information for all 3 classes here. October Events French like Moi Thursday 1st October, 7pm When Scott Carpenter moves from Minnesota to Paris, little does he suspect the dramas that await: scheming neighbors, surly demonstrators, cooking disasters, medical mishaps - not to mention those lectures about cheese! It turns out that nothing in the City of Light can be taken for granted. In French Like Moi, Carpenter guides us through the merry labyrinth of his many hilarious faux pas in French society. In English. For members only. Sign up here Apéro Antivirus Friday 2 and 16 October, 5-6pm. Our bi-monthly happy hour conversation in French is open to all! Antivirus it is, in all kinds of ways, real and imagined. Especially imagined. Sign up here to receive a Zoom invitation. Zoom Café Tuesday 6 October, 10:30-11:30am. Our monthly Café in French, is also open to all. Sign up here to receive a Zoom invitation. An Enchanting Journey Down the Seine River Tuesday 6 October, 3pm Elaine Sciolino, former Paris Bureau Chief of the New York Times, will regale us with tales of the wonderful characters she met on her journey down the Seine as she charts a course through history, recounting how the river has carried in its current Roman conquerors, Viking invaders, World War II soldiers, and the ashes of Joan of Arc and of Napoléon Bonaparte. In English. For members only. Sign up here Pursuing The Dream: Living and Investing in France Saturday 10 October, 2pm Ever wondered what it would be like to buy a cottage in Normandy or a dwelling on the Champs Elysées? This is your opportunity to learn how to make the dream come true. In this Zoom presentation, Adrian Leeds pops the cork on French real estate! In English. For members only. Sign up here Mon Pays: le Liban Monday 12 October, 1pm This session is the first of the Mon Pays series, where members of our Alliance introduce the rest of us to their homelands. Join Dr. Mariam Abboud for a talk about Lebanon today. In French. Free, open to all. Sign up here Apéro National Tuesday 13 October, 5:15pm, or Wednesday 14, 8:15pm. The other Apéro where our members get to strike a conversation with AF members from other parts of the US. In French. This Apéro is for members only. Sign up and information here. Club de Lecture Tuesday 20 October, 10-11am. This month, our Club celebrates Lebanese francophone writer Amin Maalouf author of Le Rocher de Tanios, The novel tells the story of a young man embroiled in 19th century Lebanon's political and religious struggle between Egypt, The Ottoman Empire, England and France. In French. While the Club is for members only, non-members are welcome to try it. Sign up here. L'Oeil Ouvert Tuesday 27 October, 11-11:45am If you feel you don't know much about Lebanese art, you're not alone, and this is your chance to learn more! Docent Dianne Beckman takes us on a journey of exploration. In French. Free for members, $10 for non- members. Sign up here. The Lebanese Diaspora Wednesday 28 October, 6:30pm What drove so many Lebanese to make their lives elsewhere? When and where did they emigrate? Join Pr. Akram Khater as he retraces the rocky paths of his fellow country men and women in search for a better life . In English. Free, for members only. Sign up here Do you know what resembles Halloween but is not Halloween? Lebanon's celebration Eid il-Burbara! Eid il-Burbara, or St Barbara's day, shares many elements with Halloween, though coming from a much earlier tradition, and unrelated to the feast of the dead. The legend has it that St Barbara disguised herself in many different characters to elude her father and the Romans who were persecuting her. The traditional food made on this feast is Burbara, a bowl of boiled wheat grains, pomegranate seeds, raisins, anise and sugar. It is offered to children who go from house to house in costumes, while singing special songs... Could it be that the early Lebanese diaspora found its way to Ireland 2,000 years ago? 🤔 Happy October to all! The Alliance Team